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Keeping Memorial Day Healthy

Toni Ann Disantis

Survive the Temptation to Splurge.

Whether you eat out, barbecue, or picnic, this weekend we will celebrate the start of summer with a plethora of delicious foods that while tasty, may put a damper on all of your hard work. It’s obvious that having a salad is much healthier than eating a double bacon cheeseburger, but some of the choices at your family feast won’t be so simple. Following these five easy steps will help you enjoy the delicious food this holiday weekend, and still feel good about yourself the next day.


1. Appetizers: Eat before you go.

Eat before you go to your family function. This way you won’t feel so hungry and are less likely to overindulge. Just remember to keep it healthy! 


2. Side dishes: When faced with a tough choice, take the lesser of the evils.

Baked beans, mac n’ cheese, and potato salad will probably be the three most popular side dishes in America this Memorial Day. Unfortunately, they are also probably the worst for you. None of these are a healthy side dish. It is Memorial Day, so don’t have a little of all of them just have a little of one.


3. Main course: Try an old favorite with a new twist.

Ideally you would want to eat grilled chicken.  But try a hamburger with no bun, and wrapped in lettuce with tomato.  A burger has about 500 calories, without the bun you could cut those calories by about a third. Remember to stick to just one burger patty. Portion size also makes a big difference.


4.  Keep alcoholic drinks to a minimum.

It’s no secret that beer, margaritas, and daiquiris are filled with empty calories. Even light beer has about 100 calories per serving. If you absolutely must have a drink, try to limit yourself to a couple and no more than one alcoholic drink per hour. Also beware of heavily sugared drinks such as sodas, lemonade, and some fruit juices. Making your own iced tea is a great alternative.


5. Have some fruit for dessert.

Watermelon or pineapple make a great dessert and will satisfy your sweet tooth. Watermelon is another staple to any barbecue so choose this for something sweet after your meal instead of having cookies or ice cream.

Try following at least  three of these tips this holiday weekend, and your body will thank you when reality sets in on Tuesday!